Welsh Magna Carta celebration
MAGNA CARTA CELEBRATED IN WALES
11 May 2015
Last week the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives (CILEx) hosted a medieval banquet at Caldicot Castle in South Wales to celebrate the 800th anniversary of the sealing of Magna Carta. The occasion, believed to be the first anniversary legal event to take place in Wales, celebrated the rule of law.
The Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales, Lord Thomas of Cwmgiedd (pictured right) was keynote speaker at the event which hosted guests from all corners of the legal profession. Sir Robert Worcester, chair of the Magna Carta 800th anniversary committee also gave a vote of thanks at the event.
President of CILEx, Frances Edwards said: “We lawyers are the guardians of Magna Carta’s legacy: the right to a fair trial, an incorruptible judiciary, checks and balances on the powerful – all these have faced threats, and at every turn it is lawyers who have battled against the forces who seek to hinder Magna Carta’s legacy.”
She continued: “At the dawn of a new Government, we lawyers will keep the fight alive. Whether it’s on legal aid, access to the courts or judicial review – we are at the vanguard.”
In his address, Lord Thomas paid a particular tribute to CILEx: “CILEx is tackling social mobility and enabling people to become lawyers from backgrounds and in circumstances where becoming a lawyer is so difficult and so expensive…What you are doing is so terribly, terribly important and…it is through the work that you, CILEx, are doing, that we can look [to you] as a prime example of the maintenance of the great liberties that we have won that we need to fight so hard to maintain.”
Caldicot Castle was a fitting venue for the event. Dating back to the thirteenth century, it was inherited by the de Bohun family, with Henry de Bohun siding with the rebel barons against King John in 1215.
Pictured from left to right: The Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales, Lord Thomas of Cwmgiedd; CILEx President Frances Edwards; Theodore Huckle QC, Welsh Counsel General; CILEx chief executive Mandie Lavin; Sir Robert Worcester, chair of the Magna Carta 800th anniversary committee; Sir Malcolm Pill, retired Lord Justice of Appeal.